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View More American Law Institute Continuing Legal Education Group [ALI CLE] Webcasts and Conferences

For Better or for Worse: Spousal Rights in Retirement Plans

American Law Institute Continuing Legal Education Group [ALI CLE]

May 14, 2019
Recorded Online

While the available tax incentives motivate more and more people to hold substantial wealth in qualified plans and individual retirement accounts, many plan participants don’t understand how the distributions work or how to pass that tax benefit on to their beneficiaries. Who can be a designated beneficiary? How do the distribution options change for beneficiaries that are spouses vs. non-spouses? What happens when the account owner is divorced or remarried?

In this 90 minute webcast, we’ll explore how spousal rights to retirement plans can vary from state to state and what your clients can to do ensure that their assets go to their intended party.

The presenters, all highly experienced estate planning practitioners and Fellows of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC), will review:

  • The impact of Windsor and Obergefell on retirement plan benefits in same-sex unions
  • Spousal rights in retirement plans subject to ERISA
  • How spousal rights can vary considerably among the common law and community property states
  • ERISA preemption of state laws
  • Case studies illustrating spousal rights in both common law and community property states
  • Best practices in planning to maximize chances that clients’ intended outcome will occur

All registrants will receive a set of downloadable course materials to accompany the program.


  • Lisa Weinstein Burns, Rimon, P.C.
  • Karen Gerstner, Karen S. Gerstner & Associates, P.C
  • Steven E. Trytten, Anglin Flewelling Rasmussen Campbell & Trytten LLP

More Information, How to Register

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